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Jaw-dropping video shows collapse at Coquitlam, B.C., construction site

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Emergency work is underway after a collapse at a Coquitlam, B.C., construction site that was caught on camera this week.

The jaw-dropping video was posted on social media Thursday afternoon, showing cracks forming in a shoring retention wall at a development near Foster Avenue and North Road.

A section of the wall then breaks off, tumbling several storeys into an excavation site and unleashing a torrent of soil behind it.

"Here she goes!" a man can be heard yelling off camera. "Holy f***!"

In a statement, developer Amacon said the shoring failure happened late Wednesday afternoon, and that the cause remains under investigation.

"All work on site had attained the required permits, and thoroughly vetted and monitored by the geotechnical and engineering consultants," the statement said. "Thankfully, no injuries have occurred."

The incident also resulted in a "cavity in the soil in the area adjacent to the property," according to the company, which added that there does not appear to have been any "immediate infrastructure damage."

Amacon said crews are working with the City of Coquitlam and all relevant authorities to remediate the site.

That emergency work, which is expected to continue throughout the next few days and nights, has forced the closure of Foster between North Road and Whiting Way to "ensure site and public safety," the city said in a statement.

"Repairs to the wall are being supervised by the developer’s professional geotechnical engineers, and they are completing inspections of the rest of the shoring walls. It is not expected that there is any risk to infrastructure or buildings beyond the immediate area of failure," the city added.

"We apologize to area residents for the noise of overnight work."

Engineers and Geoscientists B.C. – the regulatory body that oversees the engineering and geoscience professions – said it is currently gathering evidence about the collapse.

"We are obviously concerned over what happened, and are happy that it appears no one was hurt," said Mykle Ludvigsen, EGBC's associate director of communications, in a statement.

"We simply do not know what happened and it is therefore too early to speculate on potential regulatory actions or involvement, if any, being taken." 

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